Large endangered Humpback Whale swims 8 miles through Cape Cod Canal

BOURNE, MASS. (WHDH) - A large endangered Humpback Whale was seen swimming 8 miles through the Cape Cod Canal on Thursday.

An aerial video showed the whale swimming from the east end of the canal through the west end.

The Army Corps of Engineers and Wareham Harbormaster helped to ensure the whale made it safely through the Canal.

Warren Mohr was out for a bike ride Thursday and saw officials escort the whale by boat.

“They were actually trying to keep it in the center and it kept zig-zagging on them too. They had to keep following it back and forth because what they were trying to do was keep the other boats from hitting it,” Mohr said.

The Humpback did, in fact, catch some local fishermen by surprise.

“It just swam right up and splashed right in front of us,” Joe Andrade said. “I thought it was a tuna at first and everybody said it was a whale. So it is pretty cool to see in the canal.”

Marine experts say these whale typically feed north of Cape Cod and are rarely seen so far south.

“He did traverse the length of the canal and that is a little unusual,” said Tony Lacasse, of the New England Aquarium. “A lot of times when we have whales in canals or up rivers, sometimes they are young animals that either have a little bit of wanderlust or they don’t know better.”

Lacasse said this particular whale seemed to swim with purpose.

Fortunately, the whale seems to be totally healthy, just a little curious.

Humpback Whales can grow to over 50 feet and can weigh 30 or more tons.

They are protected under the Marine Mammal Protection Act.

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